Day At The Track

Veivers takes out Drivers Championship

04:53 PM 22 Mar 2021 NZDT
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Dannielle Veivers, Harness racing
Dannielle Veivers Photo

The third running of the Australian Female Drivers Championship took place in Launceston on Sunday night, where Queensland’s Dannielle Veivers took out the title in the six-race series.

Veivers followed in the footsteps of her sister Narissa McMullen who won the series at Brisbane’s Albion Park in 2019 and was happy with the win.

“I just thought going into the series that I could win one or two races from the drives I had,” said Veivers on TasracingTV after the series win.

The series marks the end of the Team Teal Promotion for 2021.

“Obviously it is a really good cause being for ovarian cancer raising awareness and money for that,” added the winning driver.

Here is how the night unfolded.

Heat One
Series winner Dannielle Veivers secured maximum points in the opening race when guiding $15 chance Oneofthelads to a 3.9-metre win.

The gelded son of Caribbean Blaster enjoyed a lovely run one-out and two back, with the lowest national rating race recording the quickest lead time of the night in 41.0s. The Ben Yole-trained pacer gained a three-wide cart up passing the 800-metre point to score.

“It worked pretty good for me, he didn’t have much speed out of the gate. I was hoping he would begin a little bit faster, but I just grabbed up and got the one-one before the favourite came round, and it didn’t do a whole lot, so I jumped on the three-wide line and just got the perfect track into it,” said Veivers post-race.

Heat Two

It was Queensland and Ben Yole again when Veivers’ sister Narissa McMullen drove Rockinfeelgood to score over her sister, who drove second place getter Aussie Rock.

Settling one-out and six-back, McMullen found clear room out three and four-wide from the 700-metres to score by 2.8 metres in 1m 58.6s.

“There has been plenty of speed. I think maybe the way to go is set back and try finish over the top,” said the winning driver post-race.

Heat Three
South Australia’s Danielle Hill drove six-winners last time she was in Launceston, and she secured maximum points in heat three.

She was listed to drive the short price favourite Annerie, who was scratched before the race, which saw Hill pick up the drive on the first emergency, Coveffe Hustler, who gave Yole an early training treble on the card.

Coveffe Hustler, who was a Hobart winner on Friday night, settled one-out and four back before Hill gained a three-wide cart into the race from the 800 metres, with the $9.00 chance finishing off best out wide to score.

“She was pretty keen to get going, particularly near the 900, at the top of the turn, she was like lets roll, so I pulled her blinds and off she went,” said Hill.

Heat Four
Victorian trainer Dean Braun has been in the state for many weeks during the Tasmanian Autumn carnival. He teamed up with Emily Suvaljko from Western Australia to score with Jaffa Josh.

Sent out the $1.22 favourite, the gelded son of Auckland Reactor kept his unbeaten record in Australia intact.

From outside of the second-row, Suvaljko settled the pacer at the tail of the field over the sprint trip before improving into the race out three and four-wide over the final lap to score an 8.4-metre win in the quickest mile rate of the night in 1m 56.6s.

“He just did it so easily,” said Suvaljko post-race.

Heat Five
It was a rough result for those playing the quaddie, but a good result for the locals as Tasmania’s Samantha Gangell drove the Michael Laugher-trained Emjays Black Chip to a 3.4-metre win in a slick 1m 57.5s after being given the run of the race one-one.

It was an excellent result for Gangell who had an interesting encounter in the heat prior where her rein detached from the bit when driving Wave The Hat.

“It is a nice change of luck after the last race, I was never confident at any stage of the race, but he just kept finding,” Gangell said.

Heat Six
Ben Yole prepared his fourth winner of the series when Earl Jujon dropped back from the Tasmania Cup to a rating 66 to 74 event and did the right thing by punters as he started the $3.50 favourite, and he also did the right thing by Dannielle Veivers securing the Queenslander with the victory.

Settling one-out and three-back before getting a lovely run in the race from the 600 metre mark.

“I definitely had a lot of luck there, going into the race, I was pretty confident, but it depended on the run he got, and he got the run he needed,” said the winning driver.

The race was marred by a fall on the home corner with South Australia’s Lisa Ryan being dislodged from her sulky. She walked back to the driver’s room after the race.

Final Points Total

Dannielle Veivers (QLD) 71,

Narissa McMullen (QLD) 56,

Emily Suvajiko (WA) 50,

Danielle Hill (SA) 49,

Kate Gath (VIC) 42,

Samantha Gangell (TAS) 42,

Lisa Ryan (SA) 40,

Kerryn Manning (VIC) 39,

Ashley Hart (NSW) 39,

Hannah Van dongen (TAS) 36,

Jocelyn Young (WA) 34,

Stephanie Lippiatt (NSW) 29.


by Duncan Dornauf

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